Interview with Sharon - Director of Account Services
Having studied European Business Studies at University and also attending Poitiers Business School in France, Sharon was able to choose from a wide variety of career options. Starting within IT at a manufacturing & engineering company, Sharon then transitioned into the pharmaceutical industry with GlaxoSmithKline as a Senior IT Project Manager.
Working in a multi-national and regulated industry informed Sharon’s knowledge of system and project processes and procedures that she now uses as Director of Account Services at Intouch. Sharon heads up the Account Services team assisting and supporting Intouch customers as well as defining new product strategy based on her close relationship with the Intouch user group.
Sharon joined Intouch just over 10 years ago, and has seen her role expand and progress, just as the company has, stating “one of the primary reasons I enjoy working at Intouch with Health is because I truly believe we offer solutions that add value to people - a holistic solution for outpatient staff and patients.”
To celebrate her first decade at Intouch with Health, we sat down for a quick Q & A session.
Hi Sharon. Can you tell us a bit about your background in healthcare technology?
10 years at Intouch with Health has exposed me to the healthcare industry considerably; I have listened and learnt a lot through my interactions with many healthcare professionals and institutions. Whereas previously I was supporting manufacturing and corporate systems at GlaxoSmithKline, as a Senior IT Project Manager using technology to manage the medicines supply chain.
Can you explain how your role supports Intouch with Health customers?
Heading up the Account Services team I am responsible for all 60+ Intouch with Health customers. My aim is primarily to foster a relationship, but also to handle any projects, accounts or support issues that might arise. I know what modules have been deployed and what support the customers are receiving via their Service Level Agreements. I ensure the customer has the correct information and I demonstrate new products that will match with their individual requirements. As a key point of contact I strive to maintain high levels of service and satisfaction.
It has been a challenging year for healthcare since the outbreak of COVID-19, resulting in the need for rapid digital transformation. How has Intouch reacted and supported its customers?
While we were already offering digital solutions to support future NHS transformation, COVID-19 has acted as a catalyst for the uptake of new technologies and we have supported this need for rapid change.
In response to COVID-19 we have tailored our Mobile solution, allowing patients to check-in and be called from within the vicinity of the hospital (including the car park / external waiting areas), thus reducing patient numbers inside the buildings and allowing social distancing measures to be followed.
We also fast-tracked the release of our virtual consultation solution (Virtual Clinics) which integrates into numerous video technology partners, removing the requirement for patients to attend hospital for their appointment. Virtual Clinics is designed to fully integrate into hospital systems including EPR / PAS, while also being scalable for long-term patient care management.
Finally, we have just released the Reset Pathway, a 3-phase approach to supporting the NHS reset and recover from COVID-19 while delivering a scalable, long-term digital transformation pathway. As part of this pathway, many of our solutions are now available as ‘Lite’ solutions which can be transitioned into their full versions at a later date, reducing immediate training / internal IT resources required to deploy at pace. By phase 3, the pathway is capable of providing a standardised system across a STP region, enabling the potential of cross-hospital patient flow balancing, not only between hospitals but also between Acute Trusts - consolidating processes and delivering a consistent patient experience across hospitals.
What’s the biggest change or development you’ve seen in the industry during your career to date?
Given my age, I have seen the move from Mainframe to Mobile: putting the technology and control literally into the hand of the patient.
What do you think makes for a great relationship between health-tech providers such as Intouch with Health and the teams using the technology on the front line?
Communication is key, getting both the staff and patient input and feedback is essential and forms the basis for new product development.
How do you define success?
On a personal note I would say that having a happy family around the dinner table is a success and for work, it would be having a positive impact on my colleagues and my customers, on a daily basis.
What do you enjoy most about working at Intouch with Health?
Every day I am talking with an experienced team, all pulling in the same direction. The Intouch ‘family’ cares about its staff, customers, and products.
Which one word best describes the way you do things?
Completer / finisher.
What word best describes Intouch with Health?
What do you think makes Intouch with Health stand out from its competitors?
We deliver proven solutions that offer a stepped change to the NHS; improving the patient experience and offering digital and agile projects to our customers.
When you are not at work, what are we most likely to find you doing?
As a Mum of two teenagers I am often a taxi driver to and from their various sports training and matches, that is when I am not playing netball (fun league) myself. Cycling is another hobby, but that is so I can eat cake and drink wine!
If you were not part of the Intouch with Health team and could have any job in the world, what would it be?
When I was young, I wanted to be in nurse, having been in hospital with meningitis for a few weeks. Now my dream job would be a Sports Scientist for TeamGB, combining my interests in health and sport.